Do We Have the Original Text? Some Optimism in Textual Criticism | Michael J. Kruger

Mike Kruger’s closing words in this article:

Although we can acknowledge that absolute certainty about every single variant is unattainable, we can also acknowledge that absolute certainty is not necessary.  We can recover a text so very close to the original that it is more than sufficient for accurately communicating the message of the Scriptures.

(3 min read; 768 words)

Do We Have the Original Text? Some Optimism in Textual Criticism | Canon Fodder.

Why You Can Trust Your Bible | Justin Holcomb

Excerpt:

The earliest manuscripts of the works of first-century historians such as Josephus, Tacitus, and Suetonius are dated from the 9th to 11th centuries—more than 800 years after the originals were written. In terms of the number of surviving manuscripts, there are 200 for Suetonius, 133 for Josephus, and 75 for Herodotus.

When we compare these ancient texts to the New Testament, the difference astonishes. For instance, the earliest New Testament manuscript is from around AD 125, while significant portions of the Gospels are represented in manuscripts from the late 2nd to early 3rd century. Whereas the best ancient historical works have 500 to 800 years between the actual date the work was written and the date of the earliest surviving manuscript, there is less than a 100-year gap between the writing of the Gospels and the manuscripts we possess. This difference cannot be overstated.

(4 min read; 869 words)

Why You Can Trust Your Bible | TGC | The Gospel Coalition.
(HT: Greg West of The Poached Egg by Ratio Christi)